Can Shane Ross deliver the Olympics to Ireland? Of course…with a few adjustments

Summer is grinding towards its inevitable autumnal end and still nobody has thought to stage a World Cup, European Championships or Olympics. For shame. We should set up a tribunal, or at least an Oireachtas committee, to investigate. You can have your Wimbledons, Irish Opens and endless series of Lions’ friendly matches, but nothing beats the Big Three. A summer without one is like a summer without a Seanad debate on aggressive seagulls. It leaves us feeling cheated and empty inside.

Continue reading “Can Shane Ross deliver the Olympics to Ireland? Of course…with a few adjustments”

Brexit and borders: why Europe badly needs Euro 2016

Football fans can be tedious at the best of times, but we’re rarely as sanctimonious as when discussing the social, cultural and political importance of our game.

You thought that 22-year-old’s inability to clear the first man with a corner kick was down to poor training? I’m sure we can find somebody to tell you it’s symbolic of the colonisation his ancestors faced. Somebody, somewhere, is writing a blog about how the Syrian conflict could be ended through a robust game of three-and-in.

American Football has the Superbowl but Association Football has the Hyperbole.

All that notwithstanding, it really does feel that Europe badly needs Euro 2016. Not since the RAF was the main airliner in German skies has the continent been quite so dysfunctional.

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UEFA’s political football – what’s the worst that could happen?

Every two years UEFA is handed a near-impossible task: conduct an open draw of 53 European countries, trying to keep apart nations with political tensions.

Historically, Europe loves war. The last six decades have been the most peaceful in the history of the continent, and even they saw a handful of low-level wars, several revolutions, a few dictatorships, and one major regional war that involved ethnic cleansing.

Continue reading “UEFA’s political football – what’s the worst that could happen?”

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